Summer’s winner and losers

September 8, 2010 07:49:05 Posted at September 8, 2010 07:49:05
Lainey Posted by Lainey

Written by Sarah

The Hollywood Reporter came out with a list of the ups and downs of summer (click here to read), so I thought I would tackle it from the perspective of someone who has nothing to gain or lose by breaking down the summer’s hits and misses. Which is not to imply that THR ever has conflicted industry interests. What? No, never.

We can further discuss all this today during the liveblog at 6pm ET/3pm PT.

3D
THR says: Loser
I say: Loser

There’s too much of it, and it’s too expensive. Not everything has to be 3D (in fact, 99.9% of movies *shouldn’t* be 3D). Ugh, I hate it when I agree with James Cameron.

20th Century Fox

THR says: Loser
I say: Winner

Summer’s big loser, Fox didn’t crack the top 10 money-earners this year. Do you think they care? With Wall Street 2 coming down the pipe and buckets of Avatar cash still sitting around, Fox is writing off losses and laughing.

Alan Braverman
THR says: Loser
I say: Loser

He’s Disney’s top legal beagle and it’s his head on the block thanks to a $270 million-losing lawsuit filed by Celador International who produced Who Wants to be a Millionaire. Celador argued that Disney cheated them out of millions in Millionaire profits, and after getting a lesson in Hollywood accounting, a jury agreed. See? The Numbers can mean anything.

American Idol

THR says: Loser
I say: Loser

Question: What is Idol without Simon Cowell? Answer: The Gong Show. Has anyone really cared about Idol for the last few years anyway?

Chris Meledandri
THR says: Winner
I say: Loser

He’s the head of animation company Illumination, and while yes, he did best Shrek Forever After with Despicable Me, he still got buried by Toy Story 3. Stop admitting defeat, animators! Don’t fight for second, try to meet Pixar on their field. It will be a long time before anyone dethrones them, but seriously, someone somewhere in the world can make a cartoon to compete.

Christopher Nolan
THR says: Winner
I say: Winner

With Inception raking in nearly $700 million worldwide and creating the biggest dinner table conversation of the summer, Nolan is undoubtedly King of Summer 2010. He faces a potential pitfall in the summer of 2012, as Batman 3 expectations ratcheted even higher, but for now he can enjoy his success as the high-minded action guy.

Comic books
THR says: Loser
I say: Indifferent

Comic books movies aren’t over just because some of the 2010 adaptations haven’t played well. Kick-Ass and Scott Pilgrim underperformed, but Kick-Ass is already finding a solid audience on DVD, and it can be expected Pilgrim will follow suit. Jonah Hex is an unmitigated piece of trash, but this summer also saw Iron Man 2 rake in over $620 million worldwide. Comic book movies aren’t going anywhere for a while, but if summer 2010 proved anything, it’s that studio execs may want to rethink investing in obscure graphic novels.

Ed Norton
THR says: Loser
I say: Indifferent

It isn’t exactly an insider secret that Edward Norton can be a bit of a pain, so how surprised was I supposed to be when he was unceremoniously dumped from The Avengers by Marvel Studios? In fact, I would say Marvel is the loser for a) handling the firing so poorly and b) getting sucked into Norton’s petty word-fight.

Jerry Bruckheimer
THR says: Loser
I say: Winner

Bruckheimer launched two properties this summer: Prince of Persia and The Sorcerer’s Apprentice. Both were underwhelming, but neither was the worst movie of the summer and Prince has been one of the bigger releases of the year so far worldwide. Plus Bruckheimer has a loaded fall TV schedule and he spent his summer in Hawaii with Johnny Depp and Penelope Cruz working on Pirates of the Caribbean 4. He goes home to bathe in a bathtub full of cashy money. Life is pretty much a win for Bruckheimer, regardless.

Jodie Foster
THR says: Loser
I say: I can’t call it

They’re on her about The Beaver, the dark comedy starring now utterly disgraced Mel Gibson. Gibson and Foster (sounds like a steakhouse) are longtime friends and after Gibson’s first round of trouble Foster stuck by him, even casting him in this project of hers. Now, however, she is paying for that loyalty by seeing her film get shelved, possibly indefinitely. I can question her taste in friends, but I can’t call Jodie Foster a loser for standing by a friend. Even a douchey friend.

John Lasseter
THR says: Winner
I say: Winner

Toy Story 3, duh. Have you seen the documentary about the Disney Animation revival of the late 1980’s, Waking Sleeping Beauty? It’s worth a watch for Pixar fans, as pretty much everyone who rescued Disney Animation back then is now at Pixar, strangling Disney’s animation department to death. Haha, irony.

M. Night Shyamalan
THR says: Winner
I say: Loser

They’re giving him a tip o’ the cap because the reviled The Last Airbender made more money than expected. What? This is the guy who went from the brightest light in American cinema to a complete laughingstock in a decade. The trailer for Devil, a project he produced, is being met with derisive laughter in theaters everywhere and the announcement of an Unbreakable prequel was met with open scorn. LOSER.

Michael Wright
THR says: Winner
I say: Runner-up

Wright is TNT’s programming chief and while TNT had a good summer (Emmy win for The Closer and a hit new show in the boring Rizzoli & Isles), USA Network continues to crank out the best summer programming (Burn Notice, White Collar, Covert Affairs). And also…The Closer over Mad Men, really? TNT is second best, at best.

Netflix
THR says: Winner
I say: Winner

On the same day Blockbuster announced they would file for bankruptcy in September, Netflix announced they were partnering with Apple to stream content to iPhones. Yeah, that sounds about right.

Paul Lee
THR says: Winner
I say: Future loser

Lee got promoted from running ABC Family to all of ABC Entertainment in July. This summer, he’s a winner, but one stinker project and he’ll be on THR’s sh*t list. Enjoy your time at the top, Paul.

Stephen McPherson
THR says: Loser
I say: Douchebag

He’s the reason Paul Lee got the top job at ABC. McPherson [allegedly] abruptly quit during an internal sexual harassment probe. What else is there?

Sylvester Stallone
THR says: Winner
I say: Expendable

Pun! Seriously, The Expendables sucked. It only performed well because summer 2010 was seriously lacking in testosterone-fueled rage and violence. Everyone got all het up over its surprising box office, but celebrating crappy movies only leads to more crappy movies.

Tony DiSanto

THR says: Winner
I say: Loser

This is the man who brought us Jersey Shore. Not only did he bring us Jersey Shore, but he got those douche losers thirty thou an episode for season two. We’re all losers in this scenario.

Tony Robbins
THR says: Loser
I say: Failure

Tony Robbins had a TV show this summer? Who knew?

Twilight
THR says: Winner
I say: Whatever gets the Twihards off my back

It’s a successful franchise, and while Eclipse offered nothing to lure new fans, it sure made Twihards happy. Overseer Summit Entertainment turned Twilight into a solid summer property but decided to take both parts of Breaking Dawn back to fall holidays for 2011 and 2012. I really don’t think it matters, as the Twilight faithful will show for these movies whenever, but maybe it’s a good move to leave summer 2010 as the high-water mark for the mid-major finding its feet, as a confidence-booster if nothing else.

Written by Sarah

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